Elemental ChromiumMetal as a music genre is identifiable by its attributes of strength and power. These sounds are performed by humans expressing power and strength as technique in their playing styles. There is nothing overly delicate or fragile, nor soft or forgiving in metal music. This characterization of being carries over to Metal Yoga, where the skeletal framework is aligned to positions, over a short interval of time, inducing structural integrity inherent in the biomechanics of the human body. The repeated alignment creates a memory and awareness that translates into the unlocking of potential power and ultimately empowerment through knowledge that contributes to wisdom.

Beginning a session, which I will call an interval, one may feel inflexible and hardened by the situations of modern life that irritate and wear one down. This beginning state of hardness can be called the Chromium state, a state of physical and mental hardness, a general rigidity. One can move through soft metal states like a Lead state, ending an interval in a state of Mercury, a liquid metal, or ultimately in the Gallium state. Elemental gallium does not occur in free form in nature, but as a brittle, solid, silvery metal it will melt in your hand above about 85 °F. Gallium in this sense is a good metaphor for the scarcely real experience among yoga exercisers and poor meditators with actual spirituality, awareness, and enlightenment. The molecular structures of the hardest metals form lattices that combine to exert stability and strength over the span of their surfaces and interiors, while others can be malleable; the combining of different metals with special attributes to achieve specific results has resulted in the most spectacular and most beautiful metal objects the world has seen.

Chrome Engine

To pick up where we left off in the last entry, we work on advancing out of Chromium. Because the majority of individuals move repetitively and cause muscle injuries that require healing through stretching techniques, it is most important to begin by carefully and slowly stretching from the center outward. At the center for these purposes is the spinal structure, and this muscular center spans the entire length of your trunk to the base of your skull; the spine is your power center. When radiating out from a point with an ever increasing radius, the most minuscule radial motion results in greater distances in circumference. These beginning motions should be small and gentle at first at the spine, but can result in appearances to be greater motions at the extremities which when outstretched will trace greater circumference distances. Because it is also paramount to choose at discretion beginning movements that take the spine into movements within all planes, a variety of movements are available at this stage of stretching and lengthening from the core that will lead to greater strength potential to be unleashed in movements of later states during the interval.

Since the first ten minutes of sitting and breathing covered in the last post is also a time to activate and focus on root chakra energy, the beginning spinal movements serve to move that energy up the spine to energize the rest of the body during the interval. Good spinal choices are Cobra, Lord of the Fishes, Bridge and its variations, Cat/Cow, Sphinx, Alligator, Canoe, even Child’s Pose and Sleeping Baby for initial relaxation, as well as poses that can begin by stretching the hamstrings so tightness of the spine is not exacerbated by the back of the legs. Staff Pose is a good opener to these, sitting as tall as possible and seemingly doing nothing while the tiny muscles around each vertebra are brought to action.

Next I will talk about standing strength poses that use an awakened spine throughout the extremities and our Metal state moves from Chromium to softer metals like Iron, Copper, and Bronze.

Bulletproof Yoga

April 21, 2014

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Have you experienced nirvana? If not, I’m sorry to hear that, but the following short entry may help. If you have not, you may find it consoling to hear that it is only entirely your own fault.
Welcome to Bulletproof Yoga. I’m not referring to making you bulletproof in any way. I am describing a method of delivering yoga to others in a way so that nobody leaves feeling that they missed the point. It begins by my unmistakable delivery of yoga to you, through my words, and continues on indefinitely as you deliver these concepts upon yourself through movement, concentration, effortlessness, stillness, and the absence of thought.
Let me begin by stating (once again) that there is nothing in my solitary practice that ever left me looking for more. This means I have no desire to attend a yoga class anywhere, and although I am constantly being asked to teach yoga, I have no desire to teach in a class or group setting. This may change in the future, but only if a situation would arise where ego cannot be found in my intentions.

I’ve just completed a 65 minute sound file that can be used during your full yoga practice if desired, based on the previous 30 minute Theta wave binaural entrainment file that I created for relaxation at any time. You can stream the file here, or download the file for your personal use. The binaural and audible tones move through the frequencies attributed to the chakra points from root to crown over the length of the program material.

Let’s jump right in with the most difficult, the absence of thought. If with your first figurative step and your first actual inhalation you can stop all thought that comes from you, halt the mind, all else will be easy. Even in difficult physical movements under the banner of yoga, the mind will be your biggest obstacle. This leaving behind of all mind activity is the impossible for some, a great challenge for most, but everyone can do it nonetheless. Your mind is your greatest enemy, it is what will be the root of your undoing, and it is also where your idea of who you are is seated. Who you are is nothing. What you think is so high and mighty and amazing about anything you pin on your chest is just another dark spot on your being; any self-describing character trait that shines like the bright lights of vanity in the mirror of morals and virtues is actually the most disgusting thing about you that you could do well to lose quickly. When you are nothing, you are pure beauty. Only then do you become loving, and with that you can radiate unconditionally for all and everything like you did before your mind learned how to be deceptive, conniving, selfish, guarded and emotionless, conceited, and unable to see without the filters of “my world only” through dead eyes.
With these concepts you can breathe slowly in and out, aiming for 4-7 seconds for each. Eyes closed, or open if you are able to ignore visual distraction, with silent privacy or on a busy street, it won’t matter when your mind is appropriately calibrated to stop all inner thought. Here you will stay for a matter of minutes, up to about ten, breathing and not thinking, hopefully learning to be newly amazed and appalled at who you find you were up until just now, losing all identification with the ridiculousness of descriptions like “retailer”, “manager”, “CEO”, “athlete”, “businessman”, “entrepreneur”, “salesman”, “vegan”, “writer”, “creative”, “doctor”, “teacher”, “pilot”, “mother”, “husband”, or any other foolish word that is attached to who or what you may think you are. From here on out, you are nothing.
If you are familiar with yoga sitting poses and use a mat, do this while attempting to be as comfortable and relaxed as possible in what is called Lotus. The reason this is important is because your goal is to become the “lotus floating in the pond”. If you’ve never heard this before, it is a very powerful concept that cannot be overlooked. By beginning here, you still the mind like a lotus flower gently floating atop the stillest pond you can imagine, with a still air, but not a freeze frame like pausing a movie; you are in the living universe that is extremely calm and still, so much so that it may give the illusion that nothing is moving but you are moving with the movement of living and with your slow breathing only. By sitting with your legs apart like longish and slightly full petals in Lotus Position, you resemble that lotus flower, and seated on a flat surface you are floating on that unmoving water that delicately holds you up with its surface tension. Your spine moves gently into a straighter and more erect and comfortable posture with each breath, until eventually little by little you do finally become that lotus, perfectly still, effortless, in one short moment of extreme joy in being that an eternity has just come across you, not from within but by tapping into the “thoughts” of the cosmos beyond the confines of time and space once you got your horrible, petty, worthless mind-thoughts to stop, vacate, and make room for nirvana, where you can know without question that “the jewel is in the lotus”.
Quick enlightenment checklist:
1. Do you feel an overwhelming love and compassion not only for all living beings that you have encountered in your life with a personality you can perceive, but also for all those you have not met as well as every atom and particle that vibrates to the living frequencies of reality in you, around you, and furthest away from you? If the answer is no, I’m sorry to say you are not ready and have missed something very big in your ten minutes of alone time. Work on that.
2. Do you smile so openly and wide with joy deep from within your being that not only is your face clearly smiling, but so is every cell in your body as it functions in its daily living tasks? If the answer is no, then I’m sorry to say you are not ready and seem to have missed something very critical about what it means to be a human on this planet striving to understand the meaning of life. Once again, work on that.
3. Are you still having thoughts that come from your mind, things relating to you, your memories, your experiences from the past, material ambitions, socio-political goals, etc.? Sorry, try again!
4. Have you quieted your mind to the point that you’ve noticed something different and are amazed at what is happening because your mind is being flooded with experiences that are clearly not your own (that your mind can tell) and the grand truths of unknown intelligence have graced you for either a millisecond or a lifetime or more, and you’ve been disassociated from your physical body in any way? If the answer is no, try harder to work on yourself. Only you are standing in your own way, and anyone can do it without any outside assistance. The key is in your pocket, you just have to get it yourself.
5. Are you able to differentiate from your mind that distracts you by having useless conscious thoughts about yourself, your body that is a biomechanical vessel housing your blood, organs, and flesh, and your emotions that have nothing to do with your mind and body unless you mistakenly entangle all three into a knotted mess that sets you up for unlimited suffering and personal turmoil? If the answer is no, try harder next time, but always be effortless!
6. If you state the six words, “The joyful participation in life’s sorrows”, and feel you can answer all of the above 5 questions correctly, then I no longer need to speak or write on the subject.

Next I will continue by going into asanas that will deliver you to your final pose, savasana. But for now you can go and get into Lotus and reread this post while actually doing it. For help with Lotus, feel free to search it on YouTube, there are plenty of extremely fit women eager to explain it in thorough detail, along with just about any other yoga mat acrobatics. Please remember that I am nothing.

Taking Control of Eternity

December 29, 2011

Time meant nothing to me, except that I was stuck in it. The concept of what one second was had to be altered and then forgotten, dissipated into nothingness. I knew civilization was always going to operate on grids of delineated beginnings and endings and these were drawn with hard, merciless lines that spilled onto pages of personal histories like unstoppable disembowelings, until the entrails of every dream ever dreamt by every innocent child that ever lived composed the unimaginable description of time’s arrow flung with immeasurable emotion from time’s dawn for us to keep watching, witnessing in horror, unable to look away while writhing in agony to somehow wrench our flush faces and blood-filled eyes to some scene of immaculate beauty and serenity where we can feel showered with the golden warmth of being smothered with love until our hearts can agree to beat no longer.

I decided to breathe. Breathing helped. A lot. I realized that by not breathing, the heart kept beating and it started to leave like a train that I had just missed at the station. The only way to get on that train was to breathe, but it had to be the right kind of breathing, otherwise it would just be a pathetic uncoordinated and jagged tumbling forward, like tripping with each step and just watching hopelessly as the gap between me and my heartbeat widened. I took a steady and deep breath. This was the answer, the only answer, and it liberated me from the constraints of my memory, my conditioning, my thinking of what time is and was, and it narrowed the gap, synchronizing with my heartbeat, and the extreme pain that I felt in the arc of the breath lessened as soon as it became greater than I ever imagined it would be. Once the relief came I pushed on by straightening my legs more and lengthening them from the hips to the heels and I took another deeper breath and there. It was gone. All of the pain and difficulty and torturous inescapability seemed to have vanished and I had the strength to stay right where I was forever. Forever until the heart would agree to beat no longer. I did it, I found the serenity and immaculate beauty, not to look upon, but to be a component of, experiencing it directly.

This was my private practice today. I didn’t look at any clocks until it was complete, and about an hour had elapsed. There were no sounds, no speaking, no interruptions, no distractions. There were instead the very unavoidable sounds, words, interventions, and adjustments of being fully alive.

Lidless Sight

December 25, 2011

“All things seen by the eyes are void.” — Bodhidharma, “The Blue-Eyed Barbarian”.

What do you do with your eyes? It’s a simple question that can be mind-boggling. How good is your eyesight? Better yet, how good is your vision? Let’s simplify the answers by talking about subjects and objects, two things that have to be present when talking about eyesight, and then let’s turn reality upside-down to get to the core of what vision is, beyond eyesight, beyond matter, beyond the limits and constraints of time and space.

The logical scientific mind is conditioned to think in dualistic terms of subject and object, but for our purposes it is imperative to understand that objects are not determined things, but possibilities for consciousness to choose from, and this unifies subject and object, eliminating duality. This will make more sense later on as we discern what is and is not the consciousness of possibilities. Science must now encompass both the subjective and the objective, whereas the subjective, or private, used to be ignored, exiled from science.

Seeing through previous barriers, something we have all experienced as an A-ha! moment, requires use of your vision, not your eyesight, and it is not constant but rather instantaneous and then fades away. I’d like to talk about learning to maintain that insight for prolonged periods, with the aim of making it last the same way people talk about living mindfully. I refer to this as lidless sight, like an eye that never sleeps and is always watching. If you’ve ever read J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy, or seen the movie adaptations, it is like the Eye of Sauron, which is depicted in an evil light. However, fictional tales aside, a good historical representation based in human civilization is the Eye of Horus. The Left Eye of Horus is the feminine pathway of exploring the human nature of emotions and feeling, both positive and negative, and everything that is not logical. The Right Eye of Horus is the male pathway, the rational and logical. There is a middle eye, the Third Eye of Horus, which is simply life and the source of it all, encompassing all sight across all of time, and this is where we set the stage for what it takes to truly see the world as it is.

Now back to subject and object. Science today is still struggling as a whole to move toward solving all of the paradoxes that have arisen as we ask more questions and have no answers. If you know a little bit about quantum physics or care to learn about the inherent inability we humans have to use quantum physics to explain our reality the way we were able to do with the classical physics of our macroscopic world, you’ll easily stumble upon the brick walls that our materialistic monism has built for us thus far. This means science as we know it is built up on the idea that everything in the universe is made up of matter, and we are now for almost 100 years realizing that this is painting us into a corner, rendering us unable to make sense of questions like why 70% of the universe is made up of something we cannot see or detect, namely dark matter and dark energy, as it is termed. That’s right, I just said that if the universe is made up of matter, which physical science is based on, then matter as we know and perceive it makes up only 30% of what we have seen so far in our observable universe. This is a problem for science.

Forgetting about science’s problem, let’s move on to what you can do as an individual in your own life and with other people’s lives. It turns out that the solution here is the solution to the current big science questions, and may end science as we know it, and maybe even put an end to religion altogether in one fell swoop. If you’ve followed me so far, you’ll really appreciate this: have you been surprised by strange coincidences that seem to point toward communication of some kind between you and another person or a circumstance that brings new possibility and events into your life? I’m sure you have, and instead of discounting this as strange or just possible coincidence, accepting this as the true nature of reality will bring down the barriers of materialist world view that is limiting and based upon memories and ideas of the past. You can actually figure out what it is that you did to create that communication with the constant flow that is not static and brings with it new choices, new possibilities. You can manifest things seemingly out of nothing, which is very easy to do since almost three-quarters of the universe is actually nothing.

If you’ve meditated before, that’s very good because meditation stills the mind. You need to be able to still the mind for just an instant to manifest new possibilities in your life. Think of it like training for months for a boxing match, and after all your intense long conditioning before the match, you always win with a magical left hook or uppercut knockout. Your brain and thinking won’t get you anywhere with this. This is the world of instinct, or intuition. This answers the question of what to do with your eyes as well. Your eyes are for seeing with the aid of your brain, and that is just a small slice of reality; use them for seeing, but by using your vision instead of sight, by shutting down your brain and going inside instead of outside, here is where the answers lie. Behind our eyes is the eye of consciousness, and that is who we really are. We don’t choose in the individuality of our ego. In the cosmic consciousness where there is no personal individual investment, where there is objectivity and no playing favorites, there is the place where decisions are made, and they are limitless.

Remember that every waking moment you are at risk of falling back into your conditioned way of thinking about what reality is, and everything your eyes see with your brain triggers memories that bring up past experiences in that entire filing system that is your brain. This is not the way to lead your life to make choices, except for mundane and limited choices that you have already experienced. This limited ego consciousness is called local consciousness, and it is what you use to interact with the material world that looks normal and comforting to us, which is fine for everything normal and comfortable — and boring and stagnant. Choice happens from non-local consciousness.

You have to be in an altered state of consciousness to manifest intention, and intention is called non-local communication, or quantum non-locality. See, there was a reason why this entry started with a scientific air to it. The non-local consciousness collapses similar events in two brains, two instruments that themselves are only the processors of consciousness, and this happens because through their intention the two brains become correlated, non-locally, and communication is made without any electromagnetic connection, making it cosmic.

Cosmic awareness is being in the present, and this is a phrase many people use and don’t practice or even understand. Beyond our conditioning is creativity. Outside of our ego we have free will. Intentions do work, but not ordinary ego intentions. Make your intentions based on non-local consciousness, and they can come true. If the intention resonates with the intention of the whole, also called the divine, then the intention will manifest. Now go, and manifest your new, creative world of limitless possibility.

The Best Sex of Your Life

September 29, 2011

Of all the deep, even inspiring, sometimes important and potentially life-changing concepts I’ve deliberately shared with whomever find themselves reading this blog, the most popular by far is the one concerning yoga and the whole-body orgasm. That post was meant to inform in a very short yet comprehensive way anyone interested in the subject, laying a foundation for self-journey to focus on that aspect if deemed necessary.

Presented for the thinking, rational mind, it may leave you wanting for more to satisfy your heart’s mind. This is a place where words are not expressed, where talking serves no purpose, and you fuse your most base and lustful desires into harmony with what your mind can be most at peace. This natural fusion leaves you soothed into stillness, lasting bliss, and a sense of calm that dictates your actions and decisions with confidence backed by wisdom.

In case you weren’t sure how to say that you wanted exactly this, it’s perfectly fine to simply agree with the previous sentence. This is what the whole-body orgasm is, and it is a direct corollary to meditation and its goal, and the physical experience is what is known as, in very plain and flat English, orgasm through sexual intercourse.

Women comprise the majority of western yoga’s identity. It stands to reason then that some of these women may get a small peek of what they are working toward in a yoga class, and caught up in the moment with a plethora of thoughts and concentration combined with physical movement scientifically designed to target, stimulate, strengthen, and awaken sexual energy and the body’s related organs, may experience an orgasm. It helps if there is an instructor that either touches the student or simply exudes just what the female yoga student finds extremely favorable in that “take me I’m yours” kind of way.

This is not the whole-body orgasm, but simply, an orgasm experienced in an unexpected way in an unexpected situation in an unexpected place.  It’s special, certainly, but given some time, that specialness wears off, until maybe it happens again.

Sexually speaking, women are more complex creatures than men. Sex and the desire for sex which leads to the performance of sex exists in the mind for both men and women. But because we are created different, actually exactly opposite of each other physically so that we can successfully couple at the genital region, that life experience as either man or woman, in concert with the mind where sex exists, creates equally opposite viewpoints and conditions that we deem perfect for even entertaining the possibility of sexual union. It is a wonder sometimes that anyone is having sex at all, and because of this, many people aren’t, would like to, and are standing in their own way of experiencing this part of life given to them to enjoy fully and to bring happiness and ecstasy on the deepest level imaginable. People walking in this state radiate a glow that is unmistakable to onlookers, and it is also quite obvious when it is absent. In many ways this is no different from samadhi.

So, back to women and yoga and spontaneous orgasm. What you aren’t being told is that many women have difficulty in the bedroom. Many have partners with whom they can’t even experience orgasm. This is unfortunate, and probably a lot of hard work for their partners to become their sexual heroes. These same women and others with sexual challenges can tend to be the ones having these physical revelations in yoga class, and I don’t want to make any light of it because if they can then translate their revealed path to sexual liberation to the bedroom, or the park, or the parking lot, or a bench on Main St., it’s just another step in the right direction toward the goal. But it’s easy to get stuck in the short-lived pleasure of physical orgasm that stays physical and doesn’t evolve into the unbreakable connection between mind and body, flowing without limitation, ready to be accessed at any time to the full potential of enjoying what this gift has to offer.

Concentrating on the genitalia and keeping the focus there is the mistake that will stop you from experiencing the whole-body orgasm. That piece of information may sound obvious now as it is contained in the words “whole-body orgasm”, but in no way are the genitals to be excluded. A woman by definition of how her body is created to participate in the sexual act is the receiver of her lover’s gifts of attention, desire, unselfish motivation to please and be the creative force behind her sexual pleasure. It can help to envision a woman willing and ready in her sexual pleasure as an instrument like a violin that is anthropomorphically dying to be played by a master’s hands. Indeed, every woman is just such a violin, a beautiful creation of exquisite beauty ready to be caressed by the hands of a talented and skilled lover; but sometimes this violin may need to be retuned, re-stringed, humidified, even repaired by an expert. Women, ask yourselves, “Which kind of violin am I? Am I ready to be played this very instant? Or do I need to work on myself just a little, retune the strings? Do I need more than that, do I need repair by a professional before I am ready to be played wonderfully for hours by my lover, creating the most beautiful music imaginable?”. Men, ask yourselves, “Am I worthy of playing the finest, most beautifully crafted instrument that is perfectly tuned and ready for me to play? If the instrument is just slightly out of tune, can I tune it and then play the most beautiful music imaginable on this almost-ready yet beckoning curvaceous work of art? Or does this gorgeous, precious instrument that has so much potential in it require to be taken in for repair by an expert with the intention of playing sonic masterpieces once it is ready? Lastly, am I talented and skilled enough to take on this task?”. These simple questions can tell you a lot about yourself that either you didn’t know, or have been avoiding, hoping they didn’t really matter. Your Higher Self knows better, and ignoring that wisdom can only go on for so long before it has to be confronted.

Sexually enlightened individuals, a descriptive phrase that singles out a small category of all enlightened individuals, should not be mistaken for perverted people or sex addicts. You can tell quite easily who the perverts and sex addicts are by being driven into conversations or actions steered by them that only stop and rest on the notions of sex, what may lead to sex, promises of sex, and advertisements for great sex. The world is full of these people, and believe me, I wish this world had so many enlightened individuals as it did sexual addicts, deviants, and perverts. Overzealous and overtly religious, or pious people, may even mistakenly call me, this blog entry, and everything to do with yoga a sexual perversion, but let’s not get irrational.

Since sex exists in the mind, keep in mind that sex is simple. If it doesn’t feel simple, then you’re doing it wrong. There may be too many things piled up against your door keeping it closed shut so nobody can get in. Removing all of the things in your mind that are in direct conflict with sex is the only way to get going if the starter pistol is being fired and you’re not running. If you have a tendency to sabotage certain pleasures for yourself, even after removing all the obstacles in your mind you may find other excuses to not enter the race, like “I don’t have my running shoes”. Well, if these kinds of things happen, be honest with yourself, and try barefoot running—you may enjoy it more. The desire has to be there, the willingness to participate in the cosmic symphony that awaits you has to be there, and the person who is your sexual counterpart has to be there to stroke the strings; this is not a one-man, or one-woman show.

So you do yoga. Have you been meditating? No? Oh, sorry, stop reading right here. Once you have all of the above on your plate and ready to be served, that’s where the parallel experience of all of your meditation comes into play to experience the whole-body orgasm. Otherwise you’re standing still on the precipice with nowhere to go but to be left with fully experiencing normal, localized, physical orgasm. It’s okay, billions of people live their entire lives and die experiencing no more than that. Sounds popular. Are you the type of person that makes decisions based on what’s popular, or what is right for you?

I’m not trying to be exclusionary, I’m being discerning and inclusive. This blog is about yoga. People want in on yoga for some reason. Better sex is probably the most easily sellable reason. You can go ahead and have the best sex of your life without yoga just like the billions I described above, and there are plenty of people out there to teach it to you, and maybe even have sex with you along the way. You can even be a person who does yoga and still have the best sex of your life without having yoga impact that aspect of your life.  Seek yoga for sex and all you have is the sex. Seek yoga for yoga, and you have everything imaginable, and more.

Hair Metal

September 25, 2011

What’s more Metal than long hair to go with your black jeans, band T-shirts, and guitars and amps or drums? Yes, hair can be a source of power in Metal, and even though these days short-haired rockers are being accepted in all genres of Metal probably because they don’t look good in long hair (too curly, pouffy, frizzy, etc.) or they’ve simply just gone bald, I remember the days when you had the long hair or something just wasn’t quite right (you weren’t really Metal). Let’s face it, if your hair is anything like Justin Timberlake’s and you think you’re in a Metal band, and you may very well be, nobody is going to say anything but we all know it–you just don’t have the look.

Where am I going with all of this? Believe it or not, it goes back to Yoga, stressing not the physical, but the mental. Yoga is a mental discipline that allows you to lead the body with the mind. Through this, there is a spiritual awareness. Yoga brings strength to the practitioner.

In the biblical narrative of Samson and Delilah, Samson inevitably loses his strength after he mistakenly, probably with trust, tells Delilah the secret to his strength. What he didn’t know killed him. He didn’t know that Delilah was hired to win him over and find out exactly that secret. Samson was definitely not a Yoga practitioner.

I am a lot like Samson. My long hair is not the source of my strength. At this point in time, my hair is the longest it has ever been. My hair is exactly as long as I have been practicing Yoga. In that way, my hair defines my yogic experience without having to make it blatantly obvious to anyone. At the time just before I discovered Yoga, I had a haircut known as a Mohawk for three years. At the end of that hairstyle run, I had become deeply aware that those three years marked how fresh and exciting a Mohawk was when I first wore it, and then how ridiculously played out it had become, and I had to eliminate it from my persona. I shaved my head. Samson took the Nazirite vow of dedicating his life to the full-time service of God. One requirement was that his hair never be cut. I vowed to grow my hair as long as it would get. I started learning and experiencing Yoga.

My hair continues to grow. I’ve been told it is beautiful. Women are envious of my hair, its texture, its color, and other things I just don’t understand. I’ve had longish hair since about 20 years ago, and people who haven’t seen me in ten years say I haven’t changed a bit, not knowing I had regular, Non-Metal, short hair for most of that time. I always felt a spiritual awareness and peaceful understanding throughout my life for as long as I can remember. These Metal Yoga days are just a deliberate focal progression of who I was, confident in who I am. Yoga was not something I needed to find to heal me or guide me to the other side out of some crisis. Yoga was there, however, at a time when I decided to heal myself physically out of poor food habits and a high body fat percentage. I already knew how I was going to do what I needed, and Yoga was thankfully an added bonus that I could revel in and experience without any judgement or expectation. I am fully aware of everything that Yoga did for me then, and what it does now.

I attribute my great feats of strength and endurance to Yoga. When I was on a weight loss cycle (I am now on a weight gain cycle) I got down to 150 lbs. I considered this my limit and didn’t want to lose any more weight. My metabolism was running so efficiently, however, that if I worked too many hours and didn’t eat well enough to feed my body with healthy food, I’d end up losing weight. This is what happened when one week one summer I dropped from 155 to 150 lbs. Even so, at this weight I was able to do things like deadlift sets of 15 reps with increasing weights of 135 lbs., 185 lbs., 225 lbs., and finally 275 lbs. The really amazing part was that Yoga gave me this mental acuity of how and why we are all here, and an easily accessible dialogue with what some call the Cosmic Intelligence. Being very strong and therefore making my body physically thrive in every way (and I mean in every way) was just an unexpected extra. Let’s face it, there’s nothing special about lifting heavy things in a gym; lots of people do it all the time, and are better at it than I am. The difference is in what you don’t see.

People tell me all the time that they have found God, or Jesus is in their hearts. What they are actually saying is that they have realized how to be the best person that each of them could be. Religious rituals mean nothing when one makes such a statement. The proof is that if you haven’t had the realization, participating in the rituals of any religion will have no effect on fulfilling your life’s destiny. Samson’s destiny was to deliver Israel from the land of the Philistines. The more he strayed from his destiny, the more suffering he endured because of it, and his ego was the source of it. Delilah was the last harlot that his selfish lust brought him to before he had all sense of self taken from him. This, ironically, was what saved him and his destiny.

Luckily, if Delilah cuts off my hair or even obstructs my Yoga, I won’t be defenseless to my attackers who aim to put my eyes out and bind me with fetters of brass in a prison house. But if she aims to be in direct conflict with my dharma, life will be a detention facility where I will remain powerless, reduced to something I was never meant to be, criticized and demoralized for giving away my secret to the wrong person, the one person I thought I could trust the most. How Metal is that?

You are your own creator

March 16, 2011

I learned a long time ago that this world was created expressly for me. I mean it was created completely and totally for me to experience and control and live in and enjoy all of its rewards. How does this work exactly? Well, that means you are put here, along with everything else in this world, for me to enjoy and do with as I wish. The beauty of this is that the universe is harmoniously complex and is set up for the very same to be true for you and everyone and everything in it. It’s not a one way street, but rather a balanced sharing of all the gifts of being alive in our present forms, connecting us all and giving limitless potential. The next time you feel this is not true, ask yourself what the limiting thoughts are that got you there and get rid of them. You have all the answers to all of your questions and know everything there is to know. Just ask yourself for anything and you will have it. It is all staring you right in the face.
Searching for happiness? List the things that are making you unhappy and remove them from your life, be happy. Want money? Take steps toward making money by asking yourself why you either don’t have money or aren’t making money, and remove the monetary obstacles or sabotaging behaviors. These are boring, cliché examples, but people ask for these things as responses to the wants and desires of the material world.
You are not separate from your surroundings. If you live your life thinking you are separate from everything around you, you are destined for a lonely, unhappy existence, with a fearful view of death.
The next time you meditate or close your eyes before sleep, be aware of your nurturing surroundings. They are there to serve you because they are you. Just like you are conditioned to think you are the body you inhabit and no more, extend that conditioning to your goals and environment, and move and use them the way you would move and use your arm or leg. Make yourself as large as the universe and be everything you want to be.

Before I explain why you don’t have to be a vegetarian to practice Yoga, let’s lay a foundation of where this idea comes from. Patanjali was an ancient Hindu sage who compiled the science of Yoga in a systematic manner. So, Yoga has to do with Hinduism when considering its origin. When studying the many aspects of Yoga, because of this origin, regardless of who you are and what your origins are, the information will be getting to you throughout this lens of Vedic Hindu tradition. As a first step in this Vedic Hindu tradition of disciplining the body, and thence, the mind, the Asanas are one way through which we get initiated into Hinduism, like it or not. But if you actually pay attention to the philosophy of Yoga and comprehend the teachings, it stops there as far as the practitioner either becoming Hindu or even merely imitating Hinduism. Yoga, although born of Hinduism, goes far beyond its origins and cannot be described rightfully and respectfully if it stays in the limited context of Hinduism.

Yoga is not an all-or-nothing kind of commitment. You aren’t expected to retreat into a cave wearing monk garb, cutting yourself off from society once you begin Yoga practice. This is also why although vegetarianism is suggested in Yoga teachings, it is also taught that Yoga is not about restricting yourself from what life has to offer and therefore vegetarianism is not required. To think it is required is to misunderstand the yogic path.

So it isn’t good or bad to be a vegetarian, but rather what you feel is right for you. What is bad is only what kind of vegetarian or non-vegetarian you are. Whether or not you eat meat is less of an issue than the quality of what you are putting in your body. Definitely don’t confuse vegetarianism as something that is right or wrong for animals who give their lives for us to consume their carcasses. This is a life-limiting approach and Yoga is about making life as enriching as possible, not a list of commandments that tell you what not do or what is allowed. Let’s save that for Christianity.

Destiny

November 9, 2010

We are each like a flashbulb going off for an instant in the field of time. We each experience our own personal drawn out perspective of time ever so slowly moving forward, equally quickly slipping away. Who says life is short? Who says it’s excruciatingly long? We can imagine both scenarios and both would be right. Even the light of the stars we are familiar with that make up constellations are but flashbulbs while we flash repeatedly over the earth, illuminating as brightly as we can for shorter instances. Therefore life is an incredibly magical place in which time is slowed down to such a crawl for us that we can become masters of our own destinies. This allows us to breathe deeply and slowly instead of quickly and shallowly, and we can think deeply on all that we have in and around our lives to fulfill destinies of our choosing, or the only one that feels right laying before us. This shifts focus to a determined view of time as something coming in to our lives as we anticipate it, without grasping the past and being distracted in our forward motion. If the past contains elements that repeatedly pull you away from now and have you repeating in loops like a movie you’ve already seen, it is an indicator that you have to let go, or you may miss your destiny. Also, if you are the progenitor of forward motion based on the past that needs to be released, you are still caught in a loop but it’s so big in circumference you cannot see it as anything but a line or an arc.
Consider time the next occasion you have in savasana as you breathe deeply, intent on the sun and other stars that do not warm us but fill the sky at night, and see your entire life as you would a day in your life where the sun is clear, the weather is comfortably warm, and light clouds sweep the blue above without interfering with the sun. When the day is over, your life that you know is over and after a short night, the day begins again with a new life and you are back again, a new person, completely new possibilities, new family, new friends, a life you haven’t experienced yet. Imagine the sun still strong and clear and the clouds sweep by quickly, as you are greeted kindly into this world. Night comes, and with it the bright stars that also greet you, and they are just as you remember them. Then a new day comes and yet another new life. Watch the cycle progress quicker and quicker as the sun and stars remain bright and you are still there as well. Try then to imagine these familiar stars and sun slowly go dark and fade as new ones come into being, and you are still there, observing, breathing deeply not with your body but with your energy while this body you have uses its lungs to take in that energy and exhale energy. Know that we are still here, there is no running away, there is no abandonment, and that eternity is not a measurement of time but a place we all know where we are not bound by time. When you open your eyes, experience the magic of your life as you are suspended in time the way we all share it together, one second at a time, new masters of our destinies, each new day reminding us of whole new lives.

Suffering is directly linked to wrong identifications. Let us take for example the well known figure, Jesus Christ. It is important for all to understand that based on what Jesus Christ represents, if he were crucified, nailed to a wooden cross and left there to die, he did not suffer. The phrase “suffering Christ” does not make any sense to someone who truly understands the story of Christ. A figure like Christ knows exactly who he is, and has no wrong identifications or attachments, no fear of dying and death, and therefore no suffering.

Attachment is a source of suffering, a cause of suffering, and even an expression of suffering. The source of attachment is the desire for repetition of pleasure. This does not mean to put a negative connotation on pleasure and to restrict it. Avoiding pleasure, inviting pain, mortifying and torturing the body, these are all wrong identifications. In worshipping Life, loving Life, we use our beautiful senses and experience pleasure always, maybe for a moment, maybe for a fraction of a second. To seek these pleasures to be repeated, to want to capture the individual or object that has caused the pleasure in order to own it, possess it, dominate over it, exploit it, him or her, then we suffer.

There is pain in life, and it is unavoidable. You don’t go inviting it either. Pleasure is also unavoidable. If you run away from pleasure , afraid that it will excite, run away from pain, afraid it will create a permanent imbalance, you are destined for suffering.

Lastly, we are all conditioned to take care of our bodies so that we may continue living, clinging to the body, obsessing with the body, because we identify with this body as ourselves, who we are. Such a desire to cling to the physical body brings the fear of dying or death. The body becomes the center of all your attention, bringing no openness, no receptivity to open out to life, isolation from overprotectiveness. This is a kind of suffering that is the result of this inhibition of being infatuated with the body, obsessed.

To be more specific, it does not allow you to mix with people, to be with them, an inhibition in the movement of relationships, always being on your guard. Your image of yourself always has to be protected. This keeps you in a shell, weaving around you a nest of your knowledge, inheritance, ideologies, unable to receive anything new. This causes a clinging to the old, an inability to live creatively, to meet death as a culmination of the act of living, a fear of everything.

It may even be that alone and free to act on our own we do not display any of these characteristics, but in the presence of certain members of our family or acquaintances we are somehow forced to act along the paths of suffering, as a conditioned form of respect, or a difficulty to escape the suffocating grasp of a personality that dominates all attention like a black hole. A respect for old, obsolete ways of being that no longer have a place in the world of progress and enlightenment is disrespectful to all parties present, creating another dimension of tension and suffering the longer we allow ourselves to give in to it.

Once we are aware of all the paths leading us to suffering, and luckily they are few and easy to understand, we can see clear as day the habits and characters of others that create suffering manifesting before our eyes, and then we can also see them in ourselves. The obligations, distractions, and pace of our modern world is not enough to cloud this awareness, and the whole of life for everyone is waiting to be enriched by our wiser actions.